Day Trips & Beyond: June Events Roundup

Activities to get your summer sizzling

Things are starting to heat up around the state as fairs and festivals take to the streets.

More than 20 bronze sculptures sprinkled around downtown Abilene turn storybook characters into 3-D beings. The annual festival features movies, workshops, readings, and five works of art added to the city’s impressive collection. (Photo by Gerald E. McLeod)

Abilene, the Storybook Capital of Texas, celebrates youth reading with the annual Children’s Art and Literacy Festival. This year’s event hosts the unveiling of five new bronze sculptures based on characters in children’s books illustrated by Garth Williams. The new works of art at the Abilene Civic Center Sculpture Garden will bring the city’s collection of Storybook Sculptures to 23. The National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature, 102 Cedar St., will also be showing original artwork by Williams, who illustrated Charlotte’s Web, Stuart Little, and other iconic children’s books.

June 8-10, Children’s Art & Literacy Festival, Abilene, 325/677-1161,
A baker’s dozen of the best barbecue joints in Houston will stretch your taste buds with unusual and exotic dishes not normally on their menus. Get your tickets before they're gone. (Photo by Gerald E. McLeod)

Tickets have gone on sale for the Houston BBQ Throwdown at Saint Arnold Brewing Company in Houston on Sept. 24. The event showcases 14 of H-town’s best barbecue restaurants competing for diners’ votes. The cook-off’s limited number of tickets usually sell out, so order early.

Sept. 24, Houston BBQ Throwdown, Houston,

Travel Notes:

Speaking of Texas’ oldest craft brewery, Saint Arnold Brewing Company celebrates its 23rd anniversary this year with special events, music, brews, and a Rock Paper Scissors tournament on June 9-11. Find out more at

Texas has many fine opportunities to see and appreciate sea turtles, but if you’re in Florida this summer check out one of the chances to see mother turtles make their nests or baby turtles race to the waves. Florida’s sea turtle season runs through October and you can find sanctioned events at

Other June Events:

Chisholm Trail Roundup Barbecue Cook-Off
June 2-3, Lockhart,

Big Pines Blues Festival
June 2-3, Longview,

Taylor International Barbecue Cook-Off
June 2-3, Taylor,

Billy the Kid Festival
June 2-4, San Elizario,

Texas Outdoor Musical
June 2-Aug. 19, Canyon,

Live Thoroughbred Racing
June 2-July 30, Grand Prairie,

AIA Sandcastle Competition
June 3, Galveston,

Food Truck Championship of Texas
June 3, Graham,

Fly-In, Drive-In
June 3, San Marcos,

LBJ Fishing Day
June 3, Stonewall,

Stomp 'N' Holler Taylor BBQ + Music Fest
June 3, Taylor,

Watt Casey Jr. Photo Exhibit
June 3-Aug. 26, Albany,

Juneteenth Celebration
June 4-19, Galveston,

Round Top Music Festival
June 4-July 16, Round Top,

Wine and Food Week
June 5-11, Houston,

West Texas Western Swing Festival
June 7-10, Snyder,

Children’s Art and Literacy Festival
June 8-10, Abilene,

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
June 8-10, Fort Worth,

Burnet County Fair
June 9-10, Burnet,

Pie Fest
June 9-10, Cisco,

Robert E. Howard Days
June 9-10, Cross Plains,

June 9-11, Aransas Pass,

Lions Balloonfest
June 9-11, San Angelo,

Bacon, Blues, and Brews
June 10, Belton,

Czech Kolache Klobase Festival
June 10, East Bernard,

Antique Tractor and Engine Show
June 10, Fredericksburg,

Photo Tour
June 10, 24, Glen Rose,

Tomato Fest
June 10, Jacksonville,

Kite Festival
June 10, Texas City,

Book Festival
June 10, Wimberley,

Bach at the Bach
June 15, Luckenbach,

Legends of Western Swing Music Festival
June 15-17, Wichita Falls,

Stonewall Peach JAMboree and Rodeo
June 16-17, Stonewall,

Fort Griffin Fandangle
June 16-17, 23-24, Albany,

Soapbox Classic
June 16-18, Marble Falls,

Summer Solstice
June 17, Boerne,

Pick-Your-Own Tomatoes
June 17, Garfield,

VegFest Houston
June 17, Houston,

Aztec Dance Extravaganza
June 17, LaGrange,

Texas Conjunto Music Hall of Fame Induction Awards and Dance
June 17, San Benito,

Juneteenth Fest at Emancipation Park
June 17-18, Houston,

Pride Houston Festival and Parade
June 18-25, Houston,

Western Days Festival
June 20-24, Elgin,

Watermelon Thump
June 23-25, Luling,

Polish Festival Days (Polski Dzien)
June 23-24, Bremond,

Williamson County Sheriff’s Posse Rodeo
June 23-24, Georgetown,

Pirate Festival
June 23-24, Palacios,

June 24, Bandera,

Tomato Roundup
June 24, Dripping Springs,

Hill County Food Truck Festival
June 24, Luckenbach,

Texas’ Last Frontier Heritage Celebration and Texas Buffalo Soldier Living History Encampment
June 24-25, Morton,

Texas Shakespeare Festival
June 29-July 30, Kilgore,

VFW Rodeo
June 30-July 2, Wimberley,

Gerald McLeod has been traveling around Texas and beyond for his "Day Trips" column for more than 25 years. Keep up to date with his journeys on his archive page. Day Trips, Vol. 2, a book of "Day Trips," is available for $8.95, plus $3.05 for shipping, handling, and tax. Mail to: Day Trips, PO Box 40312, South Austin, TX 78704.

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